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Capt. Tommy Thompson's Saltwater Angler's Guides

Tag: kyle messier

April 2014 Fishing Forecast, Crystal River, from Capt. Kyle Messier

by on Apr.07, 2014, under Chassahowitzka and Homosassa, Ozello to Crystal River

Life is Good here along the Nature Coast of Florida as the windy days of March are long gone and the sunny beautiful days of April are on the horizon.  Over the last couple of weeks the Gulf Coast waters have been mired with windy yet gorgeous weather.  Although this may sound like an interesting weather combination the southerly breezes actually have helped jump start the push of many migratory species swimming northward.  Each week our local area flats are starting to see new visitors.  From Bluefish to King Mackerel, to Cobia and Sharks each week is bringing in new species and new adventures.

With all of this new Action coming in to the area Anglers should continue to be ready for all fishing situations.  Now is the time that all Nature Coast Anglers should be homing in on diving birds, dolphins and Huge Bait Balls.  We typically find large swimming pool sized bait balls around deep areas with lots of current.  Bait balls mostly made up of threadfin herring and glass minnows are staging in areas that have lots of current where they can feed.  As these huge schools of bait fish congregate so do many of the predatory fish that feed on these baitfish.  Spanish Mackerel, Jack Crevalle, Bluefish, Bonita, and even Kingfish have been seen and hooked fishing these bait balls.  I for one love to target these massive feeding schools of fish using light tackle and fly gear.  For newbie’s interested in learning how to fly fish, now is the time to dive right in.  Multiple species, drag screaming action, and tons of shots at fish will surely jump start your fly fishing addiction.

For those anglers that still have the itch to get in on some of the best skinny water sight fishing action found anywhere in the state of Florida, the Nature Coast is still boasting fantastic shallow water action for Redfish and Black Drum.  Although both of these fish are in the same family and can be targeted in similar areas, successful strategies for targeting both can be a little complex at times.  Redfish (Red Drum) tend to be more aggressive as they mature in size.  Successful techniques include throwing a variety of retrieved lures, live baits and flys.  In most cases when a Redfish homes in on a bait or lure it will aggressively strike at its prey.  Black Drum on the other hand tend to be slow methodical feeders.  Typically these fish do not want to have to stray to far away from their feeding zone to track down a bait.  Because successful techniques for Black Drum often involve a “Bait & Wait” approach, many anglers often tend to catch these fish on accident.

Successful game plans for targeting both Redfish and Black Drum in similar areas should involve 3 main strategies:  Target areas with structure, moving water, and prevalent sources of food.  Most often the most successful structures are oyster bars, rocky flats, and spoil islands.  Once a promising structure is found often you will find bait fish immediately.  Jumping Mullet are always a great indicator and if the area also holds mud minnows, crabs, oysters, and pinfish you really are in business.  And as far as the moving water aspect is concerned if you have tidal movement you have moving water.  Successful anglers will find out this month that if you combine all three of these strategies into a game plan great fishing days will happen.

Capt. Kyle Messier

(352) 634-4002

kylemessier@yahoo.com

WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM

WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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Crystal River Fishing Report, 11/5/13, from Capt. Kyle Messier

by on Nov.05, 2013, under Ozello to Crystal River

Fall Weather. The Key to Great Fishing

Report Date: November 6, 2014

The Nature Coast welcomes the fall. With its refreshing air temperatures and great fishing opportunities now is a great time to enjoy the gifts of the Nature Coast. With 70 degree temperatures becoming the norm and feeding fish on the prowl Nature Coast Anglers will find a variety of opportunities at their door step this month. Of course the Speckled Trout and Redfish will get all of the positive publicity this month but it’s the exotic species such as Flounder, Snapper, Pompano, Bluefish, Jacks, Bonito and other Pelagic species that will have everyone talking this month.

Targeting Pelagic species such as Jacks, Mackerel, Bluefish, and Bonita is often overlooked this time of year due to the abundance of Speckled Trout possibilities found up and down the Gulf Coast. With the next up coming weeks ushering in cooler weather along the Nature Coast now is a great time to make a last ditch effort to get on some of the most exciting action found anywhere along the water. Targeting these drag screaming fish is as simple as looking for diving birds, dolphins and sky rocketing fish. When most of these fish coral a school of tasty baitfish the mayhem begins as bait comes flying out of the water and the fish boil the water with feeding activity. Talk about FUN!!!

This time of year with fluctuating water temperatures most Speckled Trout use a move in or move out pattern, meaning that when the weather is good Speckled Trout will move in close to shore to feed on the abundant food sources scattered along the shallows. When the weather deteriorates most Trout tend to look for deeper areas of water in hopes of finding a more consistent water temperature, food source and water depth. Targeting grassy areas loaded with deeper potholes is a key this time of year and using artificial lures that can be casted and retrieved to imitate most food sources will work best. DOA Glow shrimp and Berkley Gulp! Molting shrimp have worked well jigged by themselves but if these fish are being a little finicky adding a Cajun Thunder Popping Cork to your rig will surely provide results.

Last but not least the Redfish Action up and down the Nature Coast is as good as it has been all year. Targeting these bruisers is as easy as finding the Big Schools of Mullet. During the fall months most Redfish tend to follow schools of mullet in hopes of them stirring up the bottom as they feed. As the mullet stir up the bottom tiny shrimp and crabs reveal themselves making easy pray for a hungry Redfish. When Targeting Redfish this time of year successful anglers do not leave the dock with less than 100 Live Shrimp. With so many Redfish under or over the slot patrolling the same areas a plethora of bait is needed to round out a day. This time of year it is not uncommon to land over 30 Redfish with only a handful making the 18″-27″ slot.

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM
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Great fishing and scalloping along the Nature Coast—Report from Capt. Kyle Messier, 9/4/13

by on Sep.07, 2013, under Chassahowitzka and Homosassa, Ozello to Crystal River

As August came and went with a Bang! Nature Coast Anglers were spoiled with great shallow water fishing and scalloping action through out the month. Although the month of August was a little rainier than most the stronger than normal tides helped to keep our gin clear waters clean allowing for ample opportunities to sight fish and find scallops. Over the last few weeks cooler rains have helped trigger a downward spiral in water temperatures driving in tons of schools of bait fish and creating feeding frenzies up and down the Nature Coast.

As we dive into the month of September visitors to the area can expect a wealth of opportunities both in and out of the water. For those folks that are more interested in diving in and checking out what’s going on underwater, September marks the final month of our scallop season. As advertised the areas of Crystal River, Homosassa, and Ozello continue to boast the best Scalloping in the state and should continue to do so for the rest of the season (September 24). Late season scallopers will find the boat traffic to be next to nil during the month of September and with the lack of boat traffic allowing scallops to grow larger this time of year many mesh bags will be filled with some of the biggest bay scallops of the season.

As great as the Scallop Season has been, the fishing has been even better along the Nature Coast. Big fish, tasty fish and a few exotics have made this summer season one to remember. A major highlight of the summer has been the abundance and size of the Giant Black Drum that have been roaming the shallow water flats along the Crystal River areas. Schools of a 100+ fish ranging from 20-60lbs have been the top targets as of late and with their willingness to take a shrimp, crab, or fly this is definitely a fish that has surely heated up our summer season.

Speaking of exotics, over the recent weeks many fishermen/women along the Nature Coast have been spoiled with great catches of Summer Flounder, Cobia, and Snook. The Nature Coast of Florida is not normally known as a major destination for anglers targeting these 3 species during this time of year but with the milder than normal winter and a cooler than normal May effecting migratory habits many fishing oddities are becoming more prevalent. Making these situations even more appealing is the fact that these 3 species can be targeted along many of the same structures. The plethora of oyster bars, spoil islands and rock flats that are scattered across the Nature Coast make great areas to target these species. Jigs, small swimming plugs, live shrimp and pinfish make great search baits for targeting all 3 species. The key when fishing these areas where anything can happen is being ready for anything. A variety of rods rigged differently is the key to maximizing your fishing opportunities this month!!

So whether you’re looking for some action in or out of the water, something BIG or something TASTY the Nature Coast of Florida has what you’re looking for. Please feel free to contact Florida Fishing Adventures when you’re ready to plan your next inshore fishing adventure.

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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Giant Tarpon, Redfish, and Black Drum Action!! Citrus County FL Fishing Report From Capt. Kyle Messier, 6/3/13

by on Jun.03, 2013, under Chassahowitzka and Homosassa, Ozello to Crystal River

It’s Tarpon Time on Fly here along the Nature Coast!!!

As we enter the month of June, I for one hate to see the month of May fade away. With median temperatures hovering in the low 80’s and the absence of the normal humid days, the month of May has turned out to be one of the more comfortable months of this early year. With the added benefit of a delay in the summer season the Spring like weather has provided us with many fishing opportunities that we normally do not see this time of year.

Over the last month huge Schools of large Redfish and Black Drum have remained on our local flats in force. It’s normally not uncommon during the Spring and early Summer to finds a hand full of oversized Redfish and a number of Giant Black Drum but to find schools of fish in the 50’s+ is a site we normally see in the dead of summer or winter. On a few recent trips most of my anglers have been sight fishing and fly fishing to giant Black Drum that are being found in ankle deep water. This crystal clear water is normally where we sight fish for Redfish but in recent weeks the giant schools of Black Drum have also fell in love with the same areas. There is nothing more exciting than targeting tailing Redfish and Giant Black Drum along the same flats.

Another real treat has been the Tripletail fishing during the recent month. Normally once stone crab season is over (May 15) and most traps are hauled in the Tripletail tend to look for structure else where. However, with the weaker than normal tides keeping many grass lines here in the area, running and gunning along these lines has been a for sure bet. The only problem with targeting these tripletail on these weaker tides is finding a way to keep a bait or a fly on the surface so that a tripletail can see it. Fly floatant has worked well on all saltwater flies, however trying to keep a bait on the surface can be a bit of a challenge. What we have found to work best is to add a little “foam strike indicator” used for fly fishing to any live bait or lure to keep it up on the surface. This takes a little bit adjusting but the results have definitely been their on the finicky at times Tripletail!!!

Now for the holy grail of all inshore fishing!!!! Our Tarpon season is in full swing up and down the Nature Coast. Lately, I have been asked what has this cooler weather done to the Tarpon fishing? The consensus from me and every other guide in the area is that our Tarpon season is going to be prolonged possibly into the heart of July. Normally Tarpon Prime Time is from the 3rd week of May into the 3rd week of June, however with this abnormally mild May featuring lower than normal temperatures it looks like prime time will be the entire month of June.

We are still seeing plenty of schools of fish in recent weeks and still putting plenty of fish in the air. The trick has been to feed them the right combination of fly/bait, weather, and boat positioning. In other words the angler and guide have to do their job and Mother Nature just needs to cut us a little slack from time to time. Long story short the most exciting spectacle in all of fishing is still watching the Silver King launch its self out of the water.

So with all of these incredible fishing opportunities be found in one area why not think of adding a little Nature Coast outdoors action to your next vacation plans.

KEEP IN MIND SCALLOP SEASON STARTS JULY 1ST!!!!!!!!

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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Crystal River Fishing Action Heating Up!! Fishing Report From Capt. Kyle Messier, 2/26/13

by on Feb.27, 2013, under Ozello to Crystal River

Once again the fishing action along the Nature Coast continues to amaze me. Historically, February can be a banner month for a variety of species along the Nature Coast especially Redfish and Speckled Trout, however, with the added benefit of unseasonably warm weather the exotic species that we are targeting at the moment is what has been the major draw for my visiting anglers.

In recent years February water temperatures have struggled to remain any where near the 60 degree mark that is so coveted for this time of year. Fast Forward to 2013 and with a constant water temperature of 66 degrees many migratory species have inundated our local flats earlier than ever before. Bonito, Gag Grouper, Permit, Spanish Mackerel, Flounder and even Tripletail are roaming our local flats at the moment. With the added increase in bait over the last few weeks and warmer weather on the way most species are staying put even in between the mild passing cold fronts. The oddity of this occurrence is a welcomed sign, but one has to wonder what this will mean for the rest of the year. Might our Tarpon migration arrive a bit earlier than normal?

With all the added benefits of warmer weather and an abundance in different migratory species many banner fishing days have been recorded this month and many more will be on the way. My angler Todd Dobrinsky of Lady Lake, FL experienced one of these incredible days this month. We started our morning off with a beautiful sunrise that was highlighted by a few dolphins feeding on mullet during the boat ride out. Upon landing on our first crystal clear flat Todd’s first cast with a Berkley Gulp Jig was inhaled by a nice 17” Speckled Trout. For the next 2 hours Todd and I made a couple of drifts landing close to 40 Trout before deciding to switch gears. Our next stop was on some of the shallow rocks, wrecks, and reefs that have made our area famous in recent years. Our main target was Sheepshead but it became apparent very quickly that the Sheepshead were going to have to work very hard to get passed the Spanish Mackerel and Gag Grouper. In total Todd and I fished 3 rocks for 6 Sheepshead, 4 Spanish Mackerel, 2 Flounder and over 20 Grouper including a 10lb Whopper on light tackle. Needless to say this is the kind of action that makes our area so famous (and I didn’t even mention the school of 50 30lb+ Black Drum we couldn’t get to bite).

Finally, to cap off one of the most exotic winters on record, the fresh water Bass fishing in the Crystal River is also starting to heat up. Normally, our fresh water rivers are often over looked due to the amount of Big Bass Lakes that we have scattered around our county, but this time of year the Bass Fishing can be a great alternative on less than stellar weather days or be an added bonus during a saltwater outing. The Bass in the Crystal River are in a pre spawn mode, working on their beds and are more than willing to take a well presented Shiner, Lure, and even flies. Nothing is more exciting in freshwater than watching a Largemouth Bass smoke a topwater popper on fly, just ask Bobbi Cox who had the opportunity to experience this for the first time during one of our most recent fishing trips.

An in all Great weather has equaled great fishing and with our Spring season right around the corner why not think about a Florida Fishing Adventure during your next vacation plans.

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM<br< a=””>

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WHAT WINTER? Florida Fishing on Fire!! Crystal River Fishing Report, Capt. Kyle Messier, 2/1/13

by on Feb.06, 2013, under Ozello to Crystal River

Winter.  What Winter?  70 and 80 degree temperatures have been the staple over the last few weeks and as unbelievable as the great weather has been the inshore fishing has been as epic as the weather.  Normally this time of year the Nature Coast can become some what limited as to the featured species that are targeted and the areas that we fish.  However, during this New Year myself and all of my anglers have been spoiled with opportunities that we normally do not encounter until the middle of the Spring.

What do you like to catch?  I for one like to catch what ever species are available during the particular time of year that I’m fishing.  Normally for this time of year the most prevalent species are the Redfish, Speckled Trout, Sheepshead, Black Drum and Snapper.  At the moment the large area where we target a majority of these species is inundated with all of the species listed above and many species that should be long gone by now.  Gag Grouper, Pompano, Spanish Mackerel, Black Sea Bass, Tripletail, Flounder, and even Cobia should all have headed south by now in preparation for the Florida winter, but with water temperatures still hovering in the high 60’s low 70’s most of our fish that thrive in the Fall and Spring are thriving this winter.

If you like a mixed bag of species the Nature Coast of Florida is offering anglers a bounty of opportunities.  The crystal clear waters that we’re fishing at the moment are teaming with life making for perfect sight fishing and fly fishing opportunities.  During a recent fly fishing charter myself and Dave Ruddock (visiting from Cape Cod, MA) enjoyed fantastic weather and great fishing for a variety of species.  Dave’s goal while fishing Florida was to knock off as many different species on fly as he could with in 2 days of fishing.  Over our 2 day stretch Dave hooked and landed over a dozen species including Redfish, Speckled Trout, Grouper, Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, Pompano, Sheepshead, and Snapper.  This catch would have been fantastic to accomplish in the Spring or Fall but that fact that he was able to pull this off in January shows how unseasonably Fantastic our weather and fishing has been.

Like many I am hoping that the epic fishing of our winter season will be the precursor for many more epic months spread throughout the 2013 season.  There are already plenty of signs that both the inshore and near shore fishing opportunities may feature a variety of unexpected catches.  It wouldn’t surprise me if our Tarpon season heats up a little earlier than normal and I would love to think that we may have Bonita swimming through our waters for a majority of the year.  So with so much to look forward to in great weather and fantastic fishing, why not think about fishing the Crystal River and Homosassa areas of Florida during this WINTER? season.

Capt. Kyle Messier

(352) 634-4002

kylemessier@yahoo.com

WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM

WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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What Winter (2013)–Florida Fishing on Fire!! Report from Capt. Kyle Messier, Crystal River

by on Jan.30, 2013, under Ozello to Crystal River

Winter. What Winter? 70 and 80 degree temperatures have been the staple over the last few weeks and as unbelievable as the great weather has been the inshore fishing has been as epic as the weather. Normally this time of year the Nature Coast can become some what limited as to the featured species that are targeted and the areas that we fish. However, during this New Year myself and all of my anglers have been spoiled with opportunities that we normally do not encounter until the middle of the Spring.

What do you like to catch? I for one like to catch what ever species are available during the particular time of year that I’m fishing. Normally for this time of year the most prevalent species are the Redfish, Speckled Trout, Sheepshead, Black Drum and Snapper. At the moment the large area where we target a majority of these species is inundated with all of the species listed above and many species that should be long gone by now. Gag Grouper, Pompano, Spanish Mackerel, Black Sea Bass, Tripletail, Flounder, and even Cobia should all have headed south by now in preparation for the Florida winter, but with water temperatures still hovering in the high 60’s low 70’s most of our fish that thrive in the Fall and Spring are thriving this winter.

If you like a mixed bag of species the Nature Coast of Florida is offering anglers a bounty of opportunities. The crystal clear waters that we’re fishing at the moment are teaming with life making for perfect sight fishing and fly fishing opportunities. During a recent fly fishing charter myself and Dave Ruddock (visiting from Cape Cod, MA) enjoyed fantastic weather and great fishing for a variety of species. Dave’s goal while fishing Florida was to knock off as many different species on fly as he could with in 2 days of fishing. Over our 2 day stretch Dave hooked and landed over a dozen species including Redfish, Speckled Trout, Grouper, Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, Pompano, Sheepshead, and Snapper. This catch would have been fantastic to accomplish in the Spring or Fall but that fact that he was able to pull this off in January shows how unseasonably Fantastic our weather and fishing has been.

Like many I am hoping that the epic fishing of our winter season will be the precursor for many more epic months spread throughout the 2013 season. There are already plenty of signs that both the inshore and near shore fishing opportunities may feature a variety of unexpected catches. It wouldn’t surprise me if our Tarpon season heats up a little earlier than normal and I would love to think that we may have Bonita swimming through our waters for a majority of the year. So with so much to look forward to in great weather and fantastic fishing, why not think about fishing the Crystal River and Homosassa areas of Florida during this WINTER? season.

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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1/1/13 Crystal River Fishing Report, Capt. Kyle Messier

by on Jan.03, 2013, under Ozello to Crystal River

Skinny Water Redfish and Sheepshead Action!

Report Date: January 1, 2013
Goodbye 2012, Hello 2013!! 2012 was a very good year for Florida Fishing Adventures and the many anglers that fished with us this past year. With tons of firsts, banner fishing days and memorable weather days over the past year it’s going to be hard to usher in a new year when the old one was so good to us. That being said 2013 is already shaping up to be a Great Year. With decent winter weather forecasted over the next few weeks’ life is looking good here along the Nature Coast.

With our winter weather scenario looking very mild for the month of January most anglers can count on some great skinny water fishing action along the Crystal River and Homosassa areas. January has long been considered a prime month for targeting skinny water fish including Redfish, Speckled Trout, Sheepshead and Giant Black Drum due the negative tides the winter months are famous for. Areas that normally hold constant water depths throughout the Spring, Summer, and Fall are left nearly bone dry during certain tides throughout the winter months. With such shallow water depths occurring over the next few months targeting fish in extremely shallow water is a sure bet this time of year.

The most popular game fish that will be targeted during these winter low tides will be our Redfish. Targeting Redfish in extreme shallow water is one of the most exciting fishing events that occurs along the Nature Coast throughout the year. We often target these fish in less than a foot of water and the lower the tides the better this fishing can be. As the tides fall most of our Redfish hold close to some type of hole or divot along a shallow flat. These fish forage on the shallow flat but use the hole to flee from predators (such as osprey and eagles). When these fish forage on their particular flat they often plant their faces deep into the grass beds and use their noses like shovels to move around dirt and dig up shrimp or crabs. As these Redfish consume themselves with a bounty of prey in shallow water they often find that parts of their tails and backs become exposed due to the receding tides. This is the spectacle that all shallow water enthusiasts dream of sight fishing to a tailing fish. Mainly because a Tailing fish is a feeding fish. Live baits, lures and flys will all prove to be successful but just keep in mind that a fish in skinny water is always on edge. Baits and fly’s that can be delicately presented will be the most successful.

As awesome as the skinny water action is along the Nature Coast at the moment, the Sheepshead action along many of the oyster bars, rock flats, marker pilings and rocky holes is just as good. Sheepshead are probably one of the most tasty fish that swims and with huge schools of fish congregating around many local structures now is a prime time to target these prespawn hard fighting fish. Chumming an area that holds Sheepshead is a sure way to create a feeding frenzy. Chumming with shrimp, crabs, oysters, and even barnicles will surely entice most Sheepshead to bite as they do not let most meals go by at the moment. The trick when fishing for Sheepshead is to try and withstand the first few initial pecks of your bait. Often when these fish are pecking at your bait they are just taste testing it to make sure it’s something they want to gorge on. Most of the time you will receive 4 or 5 small tap, tap type bites before the major bang bite occurs. This fishing is a ton of fun for kids and adults alike. It can be a little bit of a challenge but once you get the hang of it, these fish in Pinstripes will keep the entire family entertained.

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM

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Florida Fishing, the true gift of Christmas–A 12/12/12 Crystal River Fishing Report from Capt. Kyle Messier

by on Dec.12, 2012, under Ozello to Crystal River

Florida Fishing, the true gift of Christmas

Report Date: December 12, 2012

Capt. Kyle had his hands full sight fishing this Monster Redfish using a lucky shrimp from Ed’s Bait and Tackle in Crystal River.

Here in Florida we Floridians have been spoiled with the gift of great weather and incredible fishing over the holiday season. With weeks of mild 70 degree weather accompanied by light winds as you can imagine the fishing opportunities are endless along the Nature Coast of Florida at the moment. Sight fishing for tailing Redfish, Casting lures for Gator Trout, and throwing flies at tasty Sheepshead feeding on oysters have all been sure bets during the last few weeks. The only downfall to this great weather and fishing is we’ll never know just how long this pattern will last.

The one constant for the reminder of the year is that most inshore game fish species will continue foraging like crazy to stock up fat for the upcoming winter weather season (when ever it arrives). Redfish especially tend to feed heavily as the impending winter season approaches. At the moment most of our best Redfishing is occurring in areas that hold an abundance of prey for this time of year. Targeting structures in shallow water such as oyster bars, deep drop offs, and rock flats all host a variety of Redfish prey and make great target zones for targeting Redfish this month. There are few areas in both Crystal River and Homosassa that contain all three which make great staging grounds for these fish no matter the weather or tidal pattern. Sight fishing live shrimp, Berkley Gulp! shrimp, DOA Jerkbaits, and a variety of flies have all been extremely productive.

While fishing these same shallow water structures this time of year most anglers will come into contact with a variety of other species including Giant Speckled Trout, Sheepshead and Flounder. Having a variety of rods ready for all instances makes great sense this time of year. I for one always try to have a live shrimp ready to use as a pitch bait incase a sight fishing opportunity presents itself. Considering most of the productive fishing water is on average three feet or less, opportunities to sight fish most of your catch is as reliable as our sunny days. The key to having a pitch bait ready is use the least amount of weight possible to get your bait to the intended target. Most of our live shrimp coming from the Gulf are extremely large at the moment and my anglers are getting by using just the shrimp on 1/0 live bait hook. This no weight rig is perfect to make delicate presentations to already weary shallow water feeders.

With extreme shallow water fishing at it’s best this month and delicate presentations at a premium when sight fishing, now is a great time to target some of our inshore species on fly. Opportunities to catch a variety of species on fly are occurring every day and with most fish foraging on the same prey (shrimp and a variety of crabs) similar patterns can be used to catch most species. Borski sliders, Schminnows, half & halfs have all been successful flies for targeting Redfish and Speckled Trout. However, the true gem of fly fishing at the moment belongs to the Sheepshead. Sheepsheads are a very challenging fish to catch on bait because of their typical nibble strike. When you add fluff and feathers to the mix a fly angler really has to coerce a weary Sheephead into taking a fly. Nothing is more gratifying than convincing a Sheepshead to leaves its oyster bar buffet to track down a fly. Just ask Michael O’neil that made the trip down from New York to experience this feat.

So with Fantastic fishing opportunities abound and Great weather in the forecast for the rest of 2012, why not consider a Florida Fishing Adventure during your holiday plans.

FLORIDA FISHING ADVENTURES GIFT CERTIFICATES MAKE GREAT CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!!

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM

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Crystal River Fishing Report, 10/26/12, from Capt. Kyle Messier

by on Oct.26, 2012, under Chassahowitzka and Homosassa, Ozello to Crystal River

Mixed Bag of the Nature Coast.

Report Date: October 29, 2012

Fall has finally arrived here along the Nature Coast and although we may not have the change in colors that most of our Northern friends have, there are still plenty of signs that cooler weather is well on the way. For instance our wind and tide patterns tend to change drastically this time of year. Northern and Easterly winds are very prevalent this time of year which offers anglers cooler mornings and fantastic afternoons to fish which is a welcome sign of relief from the more humid Southerly winds that are typical during our summer months. This change in wind patterns along with weaker Spring tides is a great recipe for sight fishing a variety of our local species. Redfish, Speckled Trout, Sheepshead, Flounder, Bonita and Giant Black Drum all will be top targets over the next few months and with the added bonus of slightly weaker tides and copious amounts of bait still inundating the area opportunities to catch all of these species within the same day will occur more frequently during these next few months.

The weaker tides of October and November are historically the best bets when trying to sight fish Redfish, Speckled Trout, and Large Sheepshead in shallow water. The weaker tides allow these fish to forage freely without the added challenge of a strong tide moving their prey throughout the water column. When targeting these bottom feeding species in shallow water I prefer to target structure where a wide variety of opportunities are present. Oyster bars, shallow clear grass flats with potholes, and rocky mangrove laden shore lines are normally sure bets for encountering these great sight fishing species. The fact that these areas hold plenty of prey year round and offer these species a number of different ambush points and escape routes make sight fishing these areas a real challenge.

Todd is pictured here with one of over 7 Sheepshead we sight fished during the early morning low tide along the Nature Coast.

Sight fishing is by far the most challenging yet rewarding way to target inshore fish species along the Nature Coast. However, it’s not the only way to target these inshore game fish. The crystal clear waters of Crystal River and Homosassa provide anglers with many different opportunities to target large inshore game fish. The most popular technique along the area is to use Popping bobbers with Live Shrimp, Gulp! Shrimp or DOA Shrimp. This rig allows anglers to target many different species while covering vast amounts areas. The fact that the bait is constantly in the water is a huge benefit and the added bonus of the popping cork working as a surface lure presents many different opportunities for a variety of species. The most important aspect to consider when working this technique is to make sure the cork splashes rather than drags. If you’re able to work a cork all day without a fish putting any teeth marks on it, you didn’t work it hard enough.

Fall is the time of year that all anglers and guides look forward to the most. Cooler weather, a plethora of fishing opportunities, and the arrival of many migratory species both in the water and out make every day during the fall a special day. With the holiday season right around the corner the gift that keeps on giving are the great days spent with families and friends in the great outdoors. So if you are interested in checking out the best fishing and scenery in the state of Florida look no further than the Crystal River and Homosassa areas otherwise known as the “Nature Coast of Florida.”

Capt. Kyle Messier
(352) 634-4002
kylemessier@yahoo.com
WWW.FLORIDAFISHINGADVENTURES.COM
WWW.CRYSTALRIVER-FLYFISHING.COM
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